Mobile units and nutrition assistance extend Sage Memorial’s reach

One of Sage Memorial’s mobile health care units displays its mission statement. “We’re hoping to provide comprehensive health care services,” said Kathryn Barron, nurse practitioner and director of outpatient services and community health at Sage Memorial. (Photo by Kevinjonah Paguio/Cronkite News)

The entrance to Sage Memorial Hospital’s old medical facility. Its mobile health care units provide services to eight locations on the Navajo Nation. (Photo by Kevinjonah Paguio/Cronkite News)

GANADO – Sage Memorial Hospital is tackling access to health care beyond its main facility in Ganado, with two mobile units that provide a range of outpatient services, including diabetes mellitus screenings and education, rapid HIV and syphilis tests, screenings and treatments for sexually transmitted infections, adult immunizations, harm reduction services, walk-in services and more.

Kathryn Barron, nurse practitioner and director of outpatient services and community health at Sage Memorial, said officials there are developing the mobile units to provide comprehensive care.

The Sage Memorial mobile units will provide service to eight locations within the Navajo Nation: Ganado, Nazlini, Kinlichee, Klagetoh, Wide Ruin, Steamboat, Cornfields and Greasewood.

Sage Memorial Hospital is also implementing the new Produce Prescription Pilot Program, funded by a grant through the Indian Health Service. This program facilitates access to fruits, vegetables and traditional Native American foods in order to reduce food insecurity and improve health care outcomes within the Navajo Nation.

Through the hybrid food service, families who are food insecure or diabetic can choose to have food delivered by Sage Memorial or purchase food themselves at the store with a loyalty card.

“For a lot of people, the major barrier is getting access to food, similar to getting access to health care. Transportation, gas and all that,” Barron said.

The program uses traditional Native American foods as a way to improve health outcomes.

(Map by Mia Milinovich/Cronkite News)
Mia Milinovich(she/her/hers)
News Reporter, Phoenix

Mia Milinovich expects to graduate in May 2025 with bachelor’s degrees in journalism and English literature. Milinovich is the president of Her Campus, a digital magazine for ASU women. She has worked as a marketing intern at Green Living Magazine and Gen Z Publishing.